07 July 2008
I was walking home from the Metro on a warm summer night, on a street I’ve walked pretty much every day since we first moved into our house in March. I wasn’t paying too much attention to my surroundings as I was listening to Joni’s “The Hissing of Summer Lawns”. I’d smiled at the couple walking past me on 9th Street NE. I saw the dark blue Chrysler drive past as I turned the corner on to Kearney. I admired the day lilies and saw a young man jump out of the car and walk toward me.
He was holding a tire iron. And he was motioning threateningly at me. If he said anything, I couldn’t hear it. “Edith and the Kingpin” had just segued into “Shades of Scarlet Conquering”. I play my iPod loud.
I’m pretty sure he wanted the iPod though.
I was carrying an umbrella, a heavy messenger bag, and my cell phone.
I don’t think he expected me to swing the umbrella at him. I swung at his jaw and missed. He ran back to the car, throwing the tire iron at me while on the run. It hit my leg. The iron didn’t damage my khakis. However, there will be a bruise.
I picked up the tire iron as I was dialing the cops. I thought about throwing it at the car, or smashing a window. But then I exercised some judgment.
I called the cops immediately. They answered, and at the same time, a patrol cruiser rolled past, and stopped when I flagged him down.
The officer very patiently took down the information, and asked for more details. I provided them as best I could. I should have taken a picture of the license plate - or the kid. Oh well. If charges are filed, it will be for simple assault.
I’m pretty shaken. G Squared is a bit more shaken, I think.
I’ve said that if you stay aware, and walk with confidence, you’re pretty safe anywhere you go in the world. I still feel that way. But I won’t be wearing my iPod on the street any more. I was lucky. This guy was not.
And I will be carrying an umbrella, or a walking stick.
That is all.